Enlightenment and Genocide: Contradictions of Modernity by Bo Stråth, James Kaye, Bo Strath

By Bo Stråth, James Kaye, Bo Strath

At the threshold to the twenty first century the cry «never back» turns out illusory, even absurd. Did it ever harbour credibility? have been we so naive? The Holocaust was once no longer a finality, now not the top of «final options» in Europe. Genocide has endured to end up an energetic aspect in ecu politics and regulations. Kosovo and Bosnia supply testomony. This publication offers the idea that of genocide as a political and social instrument in sleek Europe, not just reconciled with modernity, yet as what can be an critical part. Modernity, even if, is additionally heavily associated with the Enlightenment and its techniques of tolerance, equality and liberty. This quantity sheds gentle upon the inherent contradictions of modernity among Enlightenment and genocide, and on how this ambivalent ecu history is faced.
This publication used to be produced within the framework of the study venture The Cultural development of neighborhood in Modernisation techniques in Comparison in co-operation among the ecu collage Institute in Florence and Humboldt collage in Berlin.

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But having lost our innocence, we are not certain about the contents of knowledge we have acquired instead. These contents remain a moot and hotly contested matter. But like the Holocaust itself, the way in which it is remembered is the matter of life and death. By comparison with its posfhumous life, the reality of the Holocaust seems in retrospect simple and straightforward: certain people methodically and systematically murdered certain other people earmarked for extermination, while some other people watched extermination, while some other people watched - in despair, with indifference or with barely concealed joy - but did too little or nothing at all to stop the murder.

Soon after the end of the war psychiatrists coined the concept of the "survivor's guilt" - a complex psychical ailment which they ascribed to lhe survivors' asking themselves why did they stay alive when so many of their near and dear perished. According to thar interpretation, the joy of escaping death was among the survivors permanently poisoned by the uncertainty about the propriety of sailing safe out of the sea of perdition, with the disastrous consequences for the survivors will to live and to succeed in life after their rescue.

In the age when mobility is qu ickly turning into the major factor of stratification, privilege and discrimina­ tion, a growing section of law-and-order concerns focuses on the figures of prowler, stalker, traveller - on which the ditluse fears of increasingly alien, wayward and erratic Umwelt converge; and on tough police force, long prison sentences, high security prisons and capital punishment, as well as isolation and deportation of "undesira­ bles" - these and other similar deemed remedies for the novel off­ putting and disturbing experience of the fluidity of space.

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